As Donald Trump has surged in the polls, Jeb Bush has struggled. The previous frontrunner dipped in the polls, but it appears he has stabilized nationally at second. In Iowa, he is at the bottom of the pack. In New Hampshire, he is now competing against the leader, Trump, and insurgent Governor John Kasich.
The two leading candidates are a series of opposites. Bush hides his last name, his logo is his first name. Although it should be pointed out that Jeb is actually an acronym of Bush’s full name, John Ellis Bush. Trump, on the other hand, plasters his last name on everything he touches. His campaign materials only have his last name. Bush is seen as reserved and cautious. Trump is often on the attack and goes after his opponents relentlessly. Bush paints himself as the experienced politician, a former Governor who has seen the Presidency up-close. Trump is running on his business record and not acting like a politician.
While Trump has risen in the polls, Republican candidates have hesitated to criticize him. Trump has tapped into a very active, and large, pool of the Republican Party. His supporters love him and if he eventually drops out, the remaining candidates may kiss his ring to win his endorsement. Save for a few incidents that have caused condemnation, the other Republicans have largely avoided talking about Trump’s campaign and candidacy.
However, Bush is starting to take a more aggressive stance against the real estate mogul. At a town hall, Bush talked about Trump and attacked him as a “tax-hiking Democrat.” Trump has said in the past that he identified as a Democrat. Other Republicans have used that against him, in addition to Trump’s stance that he may run as a third party. Bush’s word choice in the tweet also painted a contrast to his previous statements. He said he was “calling it like I see it.” Those words indicate a more direct approach, similar to the one that Trump has used. A good portion of Trump’s appeal comes from his blunt talk.
The video of the question and Bush’s response was posted onto YouTube and shared on Twitter. This makes Bush’s attack easily sharable and into an impromptu attack ad.
Whether this is a one-time shot or the beginning of a more aggressive strategy remains to be seen. Although it shows that the Bush campaign is prepared to throw Trump’s attacks right back at him.
— Jeb Bush (@JebBush) August 20, 2015